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an interval or division of time; the time for the regular recurrence of a phenomenon.
absolute refractory period the part of the refractory period from phase 0 to approximately −60 mV during phase 3; during this time it is impossible for the myocardium to respond with a propagated action potential, even with a strong stimulus. Called also effective refractory period.
blanking period a period of time during and after a pacemaker stimulus when the unstimulated chamber is insensitive to avoid sensing the electronic event in the stimulated chamber.
effective refractory period absolute refractory period.
ejection period the second phase of ventricular systole (0.21 to 0.30 sec), between the opening and closing of the semilunar valves, while the blood is discharged into the aorta and pulmonary artery. Called also sphygmic period.
gestation period see gestation period.
incubation period see incubation period.
isoelectric period the moment in muscular contraction when no deflection of the galvanometer is produced.
latency period
latent period a seemingly inactive period, as that between exposure to an infection and the onset of illness (incubation period) or that between the instant of stimulation and the beginning of response (latency, def. 2).
refractory period the period of depolarization and repolarization of the cell membrane after excitation; during the first portion (absolute refractory period), the nerve or muscle fiber cannot respond to a second stimulus, whereas during the relative refractory period it can respond only to a strong stimulus.
relative refractory period the part of the refractory period from approximately −60 mV during phase 3 to the end of phase 3; during this time a depressed response to a strong stimulus is possible.
safe period the period during the menstrual cycle when conception is considered least likely to occur; it comprises approximately the ten days after menstruation begins and the ten days preceding menstruation. See the section on fertility awareness methods, under contraception.
sphygmic period ejection period.
supernormal period in electrocardiography, a period at the end of phase 3 of the action potential during which activation can be initiated with a milder stimulus than is required at maximal repolarization, because at this time the cell is excitable and closer to threshold than at maximal diastolic potential.
vulnerable period that time at the peak of the T wave during which serious arrhythmias are likely to result if a stimulus occurs.
Wenckebach's period a usually repetitive sequence seen in partial heart block, marked by progressive lengthening of the P–R interval; see also dropped beat.
Miller-Keane Encyclopedia and Dictionary of Medicine, Nursing, and Allied Health, Seventh Edition. © 2003 by Saunders, an imprint of Elsevier, Inc. All rights reserved.


1. A certain duration or division of time.
See also: stage, phase.
2. One of the stages of a disease, for example, period of incubation, period of convalescence.
See also: stage, phase.
3. Colloquialism for menses.
4. Any of the horizontal rows of chemical elements in the periodic table.
[G. periodos, a way round, a cycle, fr. peri, around, + hodos, way]
Farlex Partner Medical Dictionary © Farlex 2012

menstrual flow

The endometrial tissue that sloughs monthly during menstruation, from menarche to menopause, which lasts for 2–7 days and ranges from 10 to 80 ml in volume.
Segen's Medical Dictionary. © 2012 Farlex, Inc. All rights reserved.


Vox populi A discrete time frame. See Accumulation period, Blanking period, Collection period, Critical period, Crystallization period, Eligibility period, Golden period, Grant budget period, Honeymoon period, Incubation period, Infectious period, Initial eligibility period, Last menstrual period, Latency period, NREMS period, Off period, Open enrollment period, Postoperative period, Pre-ejection period, Pre-patent period, Probationary period, Project period, Refractory period, REMS period, Sleep stage period, Sleep-onset REMS period, Total sleep period, Waiting period, Window period.
McGraw-Hill Concise Dictionary of Modern Medicine. © 2002 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.


1. A certain duration or division of time.
2. One of the stages of a disease, e.g., period of incubation, period of convalescence.
See also: stage, phase
3. Colloquialism for menses.
4. Any of the horizontal rows of chemical elements in the periodic table.
[G. periodos, a way round, a cycle, fr. peri, around, + hodos, way]
Medical Dictionary for the Health Professions and Nursing © Farlex 2012


Collins Dictionary of Medicine © Robert M. Youngson 2004, 2005


1. A certain duration or division of time.
2. One of the stages of a disease.
[G. periodos, a way round, a cycle, fr. peri, around, + hodos, way]
Medical Dictionary for the Dental Professions © Farlex 2012

Patient discussion about period

Q. i just have my period last november 25 and ended on 28.when is my possible fertile and ovulation period please help me identify my fertile and ovulation period

A. If someone knew it, it'd solve the human race many problems with fertility. The problem is that ovulation (and thus, the period of possible fertility) happens 14 days BEFORE the onset of menses, so you know about it only retrospectively.

However there ways such as serial body temperature measuring, along with kits that measures the level of hormones in the urine in order to estimate the time of the coming ovulation, and help in timing intercourse.

You may read more about it here ( ) but anyway, consulting a doctor (e.g. gynecologist) may be wise.

Q. can you get pregnant on your period? i know that you get pregnant when you ovulate and you ovulate in the middle of your menstration cycle, but people have told me that you can get pregnant on your period. can somebody help me out???

A. It's possible, if your menses are long enough and your period is short enough, since semen can survive (and fertilize the ova) up to 3 days after intercourse. It's not common, but also not impossible. That's why the safe-days method isn't very effective in preventing pregnancy.

Q. how should i support my wife during this tough period?

A. first of all don't call it a tough period. a happy period might work better. although the wife can get annoyed by it. but she'll get annoyed from anything... just try to make her comfortable. foot massage , bubble baths, movies and popcorn.
it really depends on what kind of person is she and what she likes or not.


More discussions about period
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References in periodicals archive ?
Free testosterone levels, smoking history, parity, and other factors played no role in the timing, but age, high FSH (20 IU/L or greater), and a woman's self-reported sense that menopause was approaching all influenced the time to the final menstrual period, according to the researchers.
Losing your menstrual period is not something you should ignore.
I also believe that you're sending the wrong message to women, especially young women, when you suggest that there's something dirty and abnormal about having a menstrual period. I think that is furthering the damage our society already has done to many women by making them feel that there is something unacceptable about their bodies.
In contrast, taking these hormones after the final menstrual period had a negative effect: postmenopausal women using hormones showed no improvement in either processing speed scores or verbal memory scores, unlike postmenopausal women not taking hormones.
The adjusted risk of fatal and nonfatal events was 53% higher in women with consistently irregular menses, compared with the rate in women with regular menstrual periods.
Researchers determined when they showed initial signs of thelarche (breast development), pubarche (pubic hair growth) and menarche (start of menstrual periods).
The researchers found that 13.8 percent of all 32,748 women surveyed reported absenteeism during their menstrual periods, with 3.4 percent reporting absenteeism every or almost every menstrual cycle.
At the campaign, both male and female students had interactive educative sessions on how to handle menstrual periods.
The former primary school teacher said her personal experience on the plight of girls missing school because of menstrual periods made her take up the initiative.
Not ovulating regularly (anovulation) is common during adolescence and perimenopause, and is a common cause of temporarily absent or heavy menstrual periods."
Association between Age of Pregnant Mothers and recalled Last Menstrual Periods LMP Date Age Group Non-Festival Festival LMP Total LMP 18-25 136 54.6% 45 71.4% 181 26-30 84 33.7% 16 25.4% 100 31-35 27 2 29 10.8% 3.2% 36-40 2 0.8 0 2 Total 249 63 312 Statistical Age Group Significance P value 18-25 Fisher's 26-30 exact value 31-35 - 8.404 0.03 36-40 Total Table 2.
Bayer indicates that metrorrhagia or menorrhagia may occur during the first 3 to 6 months of use, and menstrual periods may become infrequent or cease.